Thursday, November 6, 2008

Fahrenheit 9/11

Fahrenheit 9/11; Documentary, USA, 2004; D: Michael Moore, S: George W. Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleezza Rice, Michael Moore, Al Gore, Robert De Niro, Britney Spears

For a movie of such a hyped and disputed reputation, "Fahrenheit 9/11" is actually surprisingly good. It's quality was mostly overshadowed by the bad rumors about the fact that it won the Golden Palm in Cannes for sheer political reasons, but also due to the fact that the government, or better said the main protagonist of the film, George W. Bush, tried to stop it's distribution in the cinemas across the US. The "unwished" star of the film, Bush, is truly mercilessly criticized, but this time director Michael Moore presents the story in a more subtle and restrained way than "Bowling for Columbine" and doesn't even show up for the majority of the film, except in the role of the narrator, yet he seems somehow worn out. The exposition shows how Bush won the election in Florida just because his brother Jeb was the Governor of that state, thus some people threw eggs at his car during the presidential Inauguration Day. The sole 9/11 terror attack, which is derived in the title, is not shown (besides a black screen, only the sounds of the events are played out), yet Moore jumps from one event to another in a rather unorganized way.

Still, some of his scenes are very suggestive, like when Bush giggles during his make up before he turns to the camera and announces his war in Iraq or the cynical parody scene of the show "Bonanza" - the map of Afghanistan burns out and cowboys come riding in, with digitally inserted faces of Bush and Tony Blair, his "assistant from Britain" - yet once again, the focus of the film is vague, since the thin subplot that Bin Laden was never properly persecuted in Afghanistan is rather dry. Here Moore reduced his clowning to a minimum and went overboard with emotional scenes. Due to truly terrifying scenes of victims in Iraq he didn't decide to take a more satirical detachment from the subject, that spangled his earlier work "The Big One". As a movie that was made just before the election 2004, to stop Bush from getting elected for a second term, it failed, since he did win. But at least Moore succeeded in one ironic thing: for this movie, George W. Bush "won" a Razzie award as worst actor. Condoleezza Rice "won" a Razzie for worst pet goat. Donald Rumsfeld "won" a Razzie for worst supporting actor. Thus making it the only administration of worst Razzie winning actors to get elected for a government.


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